Early-onset cannabis use and cognitive deficits: what is the nature of the association?

  title={Early-onset cannabis use and cognitive deficits: what is the nature of the association?},
  author={Harrison G. Pope and Amanda J. Gruber and James I Hudson and Geoffrey H. Cohane and Marilyn A. Huestis and Deborah A. Yurgelun-Todd},
  journal={Drug and alcohol dependence},
  volume={69 3},

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The age of onset of cannabis use and executive function.

It is argued that the relationship between cannabis use and cognition reported in this thesis is causal, and the severity of cognitive impairments does appear to be mediated by early onset cannabis use, however not all cognitive processes appear to been at risk for these greater impairments.

The impact of early-onset cannabis use on functional brain correlates of working memory

Persistent cannabis users show neuropsychological decline from childhood to midlife

Persistent cannabis use was associated with neuropsychological decline broadly across domains of functioning, even after controlling for years of education and cessation of cannabis use, suggestive of a neurotoxic effect of cannabis on the adolescent brain.

Adolescent Initiation of Cannabis Use and Early-Onset Psychosis.

The current weight of evidence supports the hypothesis that early initiation of cannabis use increases the risk of early onset psychotic disorder, especially for those with a preexisting vulnerability and who have greater severity of use.

Neuropsychological sex differences associated with age of initiated use among young adult cannabis users

Preliminary evidence is provided that males and females may have different neuropsychological vulnerabilities that place them at risk for initiating cannabis use and continued cannabis use, highlighting the importance of examining the impact of cannabis on Neuropsychological functioning separately for Males and females.

Cognitive Functioning of Adolescent and Young Adult Cannabis Users in the Philadelphia Neurodevelopmental Cohort

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  • 2017
Although mild executive control deficits in adolescent frequent users and a relation between early cannabis initiation and cognitive performance are partially consistent with prior research, cognitive deficits were not found in other hypothesized domains in this community-based sample.

Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis activity and early onset of cannabis use.

Some evidence was found for HPA axis hypo-activity at awakening in adolescents with early onset of cannabis use compared to late onset users, which might indicate an increased risk for early onset users of seeking stimulation to restore arousal levels by using substances.



Cognitive Measures in Long‐Term Cannabis Users

It is suggested that cannabis‐associated cognitive deficits are reversible and related to recent cannabis exposure rather than irreversible and related with increasing duration of lifetime cannabis use.

Neuropsychological performance in long-term cannabis users.

Some cognitive deficits appear detectable at least 7 days after heavy cannabis use but appear reversible and related to recent cannabis exposure rather than irreversible andrelated to cumulative lifetime use.

Cognitive correlates of long-term cannabis use in Costa Rican men.

Long-term cannabis use was associated with disruption of short-term memory, working memory, and attentional skills in older long-term Cannabis users.

Cognitive functioning of long-term heavy cannabis users seeking treatment.

It is confirmed that long-term heavy cannabis users show impairments in memory and attention that endure beyond the period of intoxication and worsen with increasing years of regular cannabis use.

Specific attentional dysfunction in adults following early start of cannabis use

The data suggest that beginning cannabis use during early adolescence may lead to enduring effects on specific attentional functions in adulthood, as apparently, vulnerable periods during brain development exist that are subject to persistent alterations by interfering exogenous cannabinoids.

The residual neuropsychological effects of cannabis: the current status of research.

The residual cognitive effects of heavy marijuana use in college students.

Heavy users displayed significantly greater impairment than light users on attention/executive functions, as evidenced particularly by greater perseverations on card sorting and reduced learning of word lists.

Cannabis use and cognitive decline in persons under 65 years of age.

It is concluded that over long time periods, in persons under age 65 years, cognitive decline occurs in all age groups and is closely associated with aging and educational level but does not appear to be associated with cannabis use.

Residual neuropsychologic effects of cannabis

It appears safe to conclude that deficits in attention and memory persist for at least several days after discontinuing regular heavy cannabis use, and it seems likely that such long-term effects, if they exist, are subtle and not clinically disabling—at least in the majority of cases.

Initiation, continuation or discontinuation of cannabis use in the general population.

Factors found to increase the probability of having ever used cannabis were sex, place of residence, divorced parents, earlier problems with education and employment, and mental and somatic health problems, but these factors could not predict the persistence/cessation of cannabis use.